Your family’s health and wellbeing are always going to be a top priority as a parent, but keeping every family member’s health at an optimum level at all times isn’t always the easiest task to fulfil. There may become a point in time where you not only have to take care of your offspring whilst they grow into young adults, but also undertake the care of elderly grandparents as they continue to age. A juggling act that can seriously deplete the energy levels of a parent who is trying to be present in multiple places at once and hold the whole family unit together, resulting in becoming rundown and no doubt susceptible to illness yourself. There are many elements to consider when creating a plan to keep the whole household healthy and energized, with minor changes to the routine you currently have making all the difference to your family’s wellbeing.
Food and Drink
Food and drink is the fuel of life and a varied diet is immensely powerful when it comes to fending off waves of contagious illnesses running wild through schools, offices and nursing homes. Keeping vitamin levels high will prevent deficiencies from becoming a problem and keep every family’s body functioning just how it should be. Children can be particularly picky when it comes to eating vegetables which can often end up in an unhealthy routine and a head-to-head battle at the dinner table. It’s key to instil the importance of healthy eating into your children’s minds in a fun and inviting manner and there are lots of inventive ways to hide those pesky vegetables if mealtimes become extremely tricky. Liz’s Healthy Table suggests 19 ways to get kid’s to eat more vegetables, all of which should be manageable on the smallest timeframe.
Elderly grandparents can find it difficult to care for themselves when it comes to food, especially if they are finding it hard to move around yet it’s just as important to keep on top of vitamin and mineral levels at this age. Consuming enough calcium is important to support and strengthen bones as they age and omega 3 levels are vital to support brain function. Inviting grandparents round for mealtimes as regularly as possible, and perhaps preparing a few meals for them to take away, not only allows you to somewhat manage the diet they are eating but also keeps the family closer together. Sitting down at the dinner table altogether will not only make mealtimes an exciting occasion for the kids but allow grandparents to enjoy some much need social time throughout their week. Loneliness in our aging population is an increasing epidemic so adding this habit to your family routine is essentially killing two birds with one stone.
From the minute you find your feet as a young toddler exercise should be a huge part of everyday life, this healthy activity is the best thing to do in order to boost both physical and mental wellbeing so should always be a top priority on everyone’s list. Unfortunately, it seems the general population is leading increasingly sedentary lives and becoming absorbed and fixated with anything regarding the digital age. Spending hours on end in front of a computer screen is often unavoidable when it comes to work, but it should not be an activity that takes priority when it comes to family life. Children observe and imitate the habits of their parents on a daily basis so the best way to creating a healthy lifestyle at home is to always lead by example. Encouraging sport as an extracurricular activity may introduce them into a hobby (or even career) that they love and scheduling family excursions such as weekend walks and swimming trips will provide a great opportunity to bond with them as well.
Parents and grandparents should focus on weight-bearing exercises as well as cardio to build and maintain bone strength as age starts to take effect. Purchasing kettle bells and dumbbells to use at home is a great way to start this exercise journey, especially if you don’t have the time or finances to become a member of a gym. The Body Coach has an excellent YouTube channel that is packed full of free HIIT workouts that the whole family can follow, using body weight and cardiovascular movements to create short, manageable workouts that can be achieved at home.
Creating a healthy regime for your family does not just include the lifestyle choices you make at home, it’s important to remember what healthcare is needed to ensure everyone stays on top of their wellbeing. From an early age when you child’s first vaccinations are due, there will be a number of scheduled appointments that will need to be attended such as regular trips to the dentist and eyesight tests as well.
Whilst keeping a routine for scheduling important healthcare check ups and managing minor illnesses such as coughs and colds should be relatively ok, there are always moments in a family’s life when things might turn a little more serious and it’s essential to remember to seek assistance if it is required.
Whether you are struggling to adapt to your new life as a first-time mother or elderly grandparents require more professional, round-the-clock care, a family nurse practitioner is there to cater for the whole family’s needs and has been educated across a huge range of medical ailments and family care issues. Some parents even choose to follow a career as a family nurse practitioner after experiencing life as an at-home carer to their children or older generations and there are some excellent courses that can slot in perfectly with family life to enable them to reach their goals. Online FNP programs can be studied at home, unlike traditional college programs, which means family commitments do not have to take a backseat. Working in any free time available and accessing resources online is helping many people achieve their career goals.
Sleep is another important element when it comes to your family’s health and sticking to a routine is the best way to function. It’s almost impossible to care for your family if you have not had the required amount of sleep and not getting enough can have a detrimental effect on your health. Poor sleep has been strongly linked to weight gain, with many medical research studies linking both children and adults with short sleep duration to an increased likelihood of obesity. Sleep supports various aspects of brain function and improves problem-solving skills and enhancing memory performance in both children and adults.
Serious medical conditions such as heart disease and stroke are of greater risk to someone that has poor quality and small durations of sleep, with many medical practitioners suggesting at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night are required to reduce risks. Setting bedtime at the same hour every day for both children and adults gets the family into a healthy routine and helps your body’s natural circadian rhythm. Bedtime can become another tricky hour around the house so it’s important to make it as enjoyable as possible for little ones, bath time and bedtime stories can be imaginative and fun, enabling you to send them off to sleep with a smile on their face.
Social time should not be overlooked when it comes to your family’s wellbeing, even if there is a whole pile of homework due to be completed within the next 48 hours, spending time with others is a great way to improve your quality of life. Children learn how to behave and interact with one another and build early friendships that can often last a lifetime following school. Stay at home parents can often feel isolated and alone so scheduling in time with your friends should always be added to your weekly routine. Older generations thrive off spending time with people from any age, especially then they spend a large number of hours sat inside alone. Making milestones and family holidays a social occasion will bring wonderful memories and enjoyment to all your lives and a strong community around you will always come in handy during times of need.
There’s a lot to cover when it comes to maintaining your family’s health but it is certainly manageable when a good routine and a bit of practice has been put in place. When your children know what to expect from a structured family life, it instills a way of life that should take them right through to adulthood when they create their own family life. Educate them the best way you know how and make sure you’re having plenty of fun along the way, you’ll no doubt see an improvement in the whole family’s physical and mental health. With everyone functioning at an optimum level throughout the house, you’ll probably find you’ll have a lot more time to yourself, something that every parent dreams of once children and elderly grandparents have become the main focus in life.